Projects (Business Process Re-engineering, Business Improvement or Change projects) are typically used as the vehicle to deliver organisational strategies which are often aimed at improving an organisation’s economic sustainability.  Sometimes they may be part of a cost reduction program, or a new product/marketing program and more often these days they will involve an element of information technology to facilitate the desired change or new direction.

Projects that attempt to handover too much risk to the business fail to be accepted/implemented.

As Project Managers we are familiar with identifying and managing project execution risk.  We understand events can occur that may have positive or negative consequences on the projects ability to meet timeframes, budget or stakeholder expectations.  We have processes for identifying and reporting these execution risks and our proposed treatment plans to mitigate them.

But what is Delivered risk in a project context?  Delivered risks are realised risks or issues that are deemed non show-stoppers by the project, are accepted (but by who?) and transferred to the customer/business as Delivered risks.

Implementing or not implementing a new product strategy because of delivered risk may increase strategic risk.  To not implement may miss a critical market window (strategic risk) whilst implementing with the knowledge of the delivered risks would bring about new operational risks which could have serious impacts if not avoided.

So Delivered risk is required to be considered in both strategic and operational risk contexts.

So what is the project manager’s role in managing Delivered risks?  And whose responsibility is it to manage it? 

Kerry Kirk
Consulting Partner
Verizon Australia